Message from President al-Assad to Musharraf conveyed by al-Shara
Syria-Pakistan, Politics, 8/16/2002
President of the Islamic republic of Pakistan Musharraf on Thursday morning received the Syrian deputy prime minister and foreign minister Farouk al-Shara who delivered him a message from President Bashar al-Assad relating to latest conditions in the Middle East region and the steadfastness of the Palestinian people in the face of the "Israeli military machine."
The message states the care of the Syrian leadership to exert utmost efforts in order to avert the escalation and war between the two neighborly countries India and Pakistan which are linked to firm historical relations with Syria.
The message highly appreciated Pakistan's stand in supporting the Arab and the Palestinian cause and stressed the importance of developing and strengthening relations between Syria and Pakistan in all fields.
President Musharraf expressed his gratitude to President Bashar al-Assad and renewed his invitation to President al-Assad to visit Pakistan.
Later in the day, al-Shara met in Islam Abad with the minister of state for foreign affairs in Pakistan In'am al-Haq.
Discussions dealt with the situation in the Middle East region, the Indian subcontinent and the challenges facing the Arabs and Muslims especially after September 11 incidents and the importance of the role played by the Organization of the Islamic Conference in confronting the campaign of distortion against Islam and Muslims in the world.
In this regard, In'am al-Haq commended the role played by Syria at the regional and international levels. He also talked about the sufferings of the people of the region as a result of the long time of instability in Afghanistan and stressed that wars in the region increase poverty and obstructs the process of social and economic development.
The two ministers stressed the deep relations linking the two peoples and the importance of developing Syrian- Pakistani relations in all fields.
In a statement to the press following the meeting, al-Shara said that he had conveyed a message from President Bashar al-Assad from President Musharaf on various issues, mostly bilateral relations between Syria and Pakistan and means of strengthening them as well as the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, the Israeli aggression against the unarmed Palestinians and also the amicable call to alleviate tension between India and Pakistan because "our ultimate goal is to alleviate tension between the two countries." Concerning the issue of Iraq, al-Shara said "we are against striking Iraq and there is no justification for that. This is the position taken by Syria and the Arabs and the Arabs have expressed this position in Amman and Beirut and the same did the OIC." For his part In'am al-Haq said that as a friend for both India and Pakistan, Syria is trying to alleviate the tension and "we do appreciate this effort and this Syrian initiative."
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